2 Popular Supplements that Aren’t Helping with Inflammation

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Vitamin D and omega-3 fatty acids. If you’re taking these two popular supplements to fight inflammation, then you should know they’re probably not working. 

Taking popular supplements has been recommended to the general public for a while now, but are they actually doing what they’re supposed to be doing or are they a waste of money? A new study out of Brigham and Women’s Hospital says: not really. The two popular supplements in question are omega-3 fatty acids and vitamin D.

Popular supplements: useful or not? 

Omega-3 fatty acids are usually sold as fish oil supplements and we’ve already covered why they’re not helping.

But the kicker of this new study is that it would appear one of the two supplements can actually increase systemic inflammation. And we have been hearing about systemic inflammation really and how it prepares the ground for a lot of diseases. Among them: autoimmune conditions, cancer and so on.

A lot of foods are supposed to help decrease the inflammation in your body and keep you healthier. But healthy foods also contain a lot of other nutrients. When it comes to popular supplements that are sold to us as miracle cures, the sad truth is that they don’t do anything.

The new research was a double-blind and placebo-controlled randomized study. The levels for biomarkers that indicate body inflammation were measured at the start of the trial and one year later.

Vitamin D supplements may cause inflammation

So vitamin D supplements are the ones that might actually cause inflammation, not help you fight it. The researchers found that the level  interleukin-6, a pro-inflammatory cytokine that hints at the presence of systemic inflammation had an 8.2 percent increase for the people who had the vitamin D supplements.

For some people who took the other of the two popular supplements, omega-3 fatty acids, there was a slight lowering of another biomarker. But only if the participants had a diet without many servings of fish. For people who ate a lot of fish, the change was minimal. So if you don’t eat fish, you can take omega-3 supplements and your inflammation will be slightly lower.

I’m a pop culture nerd who thinks too much about fried bacon, Buffy the Vampire Slayer and life, the Universe and everything. I love food and sometimes you can see that on my hips, but I don't care that much about that.
What I do care more about is trying to eat healthier, even though I admit that I like to indulge in my food fantasies. I’m addicted to puns, so forgive me for that when you read my articles. I now know too much about nutrition to be fun to hang out with. So long and thanks for all the fish-based omega-3 fatty acids.

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